Along the Natchez Trace

Monday, February 17, 2014

Funny You Should Ask....

Way back in November, I posted a blog about my plans to make socks...
I mentioned back then that we would be in Costa Rica for 3 months and I wanted to take a project with me to keep me busy...  I even posted this photo of the yarns I would be working with...  and was bold enough to state that even though I hadn't knitted socks in .... hmmm...  45 years...  maybe more, I wanted to learn how to make both socks at the same time.

Just yesterday, one of my faithful blog readers, Joanne, asked me how I was coming along...  Soooo...
This is sorta "The Saga Of The Socks"

I got off to a good start.  
I'm still relying on the instructions for my first pair...  
I decided to just knit one sock at a time as it had been so many years and I was a little antsy about gussets, turning the heel etc.

Moved right along...  
Hey.... did you know you can actually try the darned (hah!) thing on while still in progress?
I think I'm doing okay...  have another inch or so before shaping the toe.

WhoooHoooo!  Got the first one done... started on its mate...
Lookin' Good!

Oops!  What the heck happened?
These are knit from the same skein of yarn...  but obviously the dye changed somewhere along the way.  I e-mailed the company I bought the yarn from and was told that hand-dyed yarns aren't always consistent (no kidding!).  What to do?  Well, I'm a purist about a lot of things, but think I'll just wear high top boots with these ;-)

Okay....  learned a lesson...
On to the second pair....  I had only 1 skein of the variegated blue yarn... I like my socks to be a little higher than average.... I wear boots a lot...  the foot part doesn't show anyway.  So, since I'd bought only 1 skein and the company didn't have any more, I used a navy blue to work the foot part.  This doesn't show it, but the pattern is a spiral...  and... back to the purist part of me, one sock spirals to the left, the other to the right.  Now.. seriously...  who would care, except the knitter?

Well...  I've made 2 pairs so far.  It's time to get serious about learning how to knit both socks at the same time.  Doing this will ensure that both socks are exactly the same size (hey, I counted rows and everything, but still that blue pair aren't exactly the same)....

So...  out comes my third skein of yarn...  actually, I bought 2 because, like I said, I like a higher sock, and also, I always have this fear of running out of yarn before I get done.

These are all done on Number 1 needles.  Now, for those of you who don't knit, Number One Needles are skinny little devils!  It takes on the average 8 stitches to the inch.  That's a heck of a lot of knitting if you're in a hurry.  Well, I'm not...  and, truth is, I love those close-knit garments that are knit with love.

My third pair of socks...
Knitted at the same time on circular needles...  but a simple rib stitch pattern for the tops.

Got those finished today...  
Here's my work to date....  On the left are the 2nd pair..  a little heavier than I like, but perfect for my hiking boots.....  The middle are those poor mis-matched 1st pair....  I love the pattern and will use it again....  and on the right are the 3rd pair...  just finished today....  
So...  I've learned a lot - for one thing I'll probably stick with doing both at the same time.  It sure feels nice that when you come to the toe, you are DONE!  You don't have another one out there waiting for you to do.  And, more important, both socks are exactly the same.  Even though I use a row counter and all, for some reason it's still easy to get side-tracked and screw up.  Heck, maybe it's age... I don't know.

At any rate, the sock saga will probably continue on....  I can already tell you the difference between Clover and Susan Bates knitting needles....  And I'm ready to order some more yarn....  I may even order some cashmere and bathe my feet in pure luxury.  Okay...  that's going a bit far....  but the colors, the textures of yarn and all those patterns out there just beckon me.....

And, thank you Joanne, for asking.....

That's All For Today! 


  1. Well now, that's pretty *darned* amazing. :)

  2. Wow--I am impressed!!! I tried knitting socks and got about four inches knitted, ripped it out, knitted four inches, ripped it out--the yard and needles are in a drawer downstairs! Maybe I should try again???

  3. All my life I have worked as an engineer designing and detailing complicated equipment, but knitting and crocheting are beyond my comprehension!! It amazes me what people like you and my wife can make with just one or two needles and a skein of yarn!!

    1. My wife corrected me. When she crochets, she uses a hook.

  4. You've been busy! These are gorgeous! Knitting socks scares the sox off me--have never tried them. Double points overwhelm me. Well done!

  5. Such a great hobby, my grand mother used to make me hand knit socks and I loved them, many, many years ago.

  6. Wow! No end to your many talents. Those socks look great!!

  7. Good for you! I've tried toe up, two at once, and gave them up as a bad job. Too fiddly to be able to watch TV or read a book simultaneously. The mismatched business goes down just fine with the grandchildren. They're Dobby socks!

  8. Those are beautiful - even the mis-matched pair! I crochet a lot but just can't seem to do much with knitting. I like my little hook on the end of the "needle" lol. I sure admire knitted garments, and the folks who can make them.

  9. Beautiful!! You have very limber fingers to be able to use a size 1 needle.
    You deserve cashmere, you should treat yourself.
    Doesn't it make you happy to wear something you have made yourself?
    Again, beautiful work.